Please excuse the verb tense oddities in here, news changed while in mid typing.
Cleaned up some of it, not all.
So I guess we're back to subsidizing ammunition, then?
Subsidizing ammunition? That's a joke, right?
It would be a subsidy if the government were paying ammunition manufacturers to keep production lines or entire plants offline. It would be a subsidy if the government were paying or giving the ammo makers tax credits to make a specific type of product for the civilian market that they otherwise would not be.
This is not ending a prior government subsidy. Before this the government sold brass casings into the used casings market and competed with all other sources of these casings for best price. Now they are still selling a product back into a free market, but instead of selling the relatively valuable brass casings they are instead going to shred them and make far less revenue from the sale to the scrap metals market.
Is the government now subsidizing metal foundaries? Only in so far as they are giving up a more lucrative sales option. In that sense they are subsidizing whoever they end up selling the scrap brass to.
If they had some other more profitable option than to sell the used, intact cases, then they could be said to be subsidizing the ammunition market with the existing policy, but they don't have a better option, so no subsidy.
Of course, there is an ironic little end note to all this. After 2-5 years when the new ammo market would have stabilized there is a good chance of two things. First, all else being equal, the price per round would have been down for new manu ammo. Increased economy of scale would result in slightly lower per round costs. Second, with increased new ammo market size, despite the lower per round cost, new ammo makers would have been making more profit than ever (and than they should given the large underserved market for cheaper, remanu ammo).
Hooray! you say? Less expensive ammo for the military! Well, you shouldn't. This policy would still have been a net loss to the tax payer. The per round decrease for new ammo would almost certainly not cover the cost of the lost revenue from the sale of used cases vs scrap metal. That means higher taxes to cover the increased net cost per new round to the military and other agencies. Federal, state, and local governments will have to increase taxes to pay for the change to using new manu ammo, or else cut staffing or reduce their practice regimens (or some mix of the three). And civilians, the tax payers, get hit with all of it, including being forced to buy more higher cost new manu ammo for themselves (or reducing their range time).
Would this have ended the shooting sports. No. But it would have been is a large waste of money, energy, and resources. And for no good reason.
Imagine if drink bottlers could just wash used bottles and reuse them as is without the need to destroy the bottle, transport the waste, reform it, transport the new bottles, and then bottle their drinks. Efficient. Saves costs all down the line right to the consumer, government entity or not. Used bottles are worth much more than the equivalent pile of glass or plastic. Now image the federal government is a massive consumer of bottled beverages.
Would anyone institute a policy mandating that all bottles be reduced to scrap and sold for a fraction of the value of the used bottles?
I'd love to know how this whole idea came about. Supposedly it was considered a "national security" threat to have small arms used casings being sold into the open market. Not sure how that's possible.